Covering five areas:
1) Her voice on the other end of the line is soothing
someone I can really talk to.
She understands if you can’t quite make it on a certain day and she knows you
With some people you learn to read between the lines
because it’s just too hard to talk about it.
I can hear the mowers in the background in my imagination.
Smell the green colors the earth of little feet and generations
who tell me I did belong somewhere once upon a time,
adorned with hyacinth and lilac.
They’re bringing in the wheat
they had to dig some new lines for the well this weekend.
2) I love every new month because I have this thing for calendars.
There’s one in every room and I plan ahead each year to find just the right ones.
I analyze and gaze, taking in the composition, savoring the feeling of the colors, the blocks for the days, I look at the numbers,
The times in between the dream and the paint.
Satisfied I organize. I print out my morning pages.
That is the beauty of each new month.
I may not have aced the approval codes the first time
where my little eyes crept towards walls of shame
would Daddy still love me and would I be good enough?
Would I get to be good enough? Would Mama come out from her shell?
but I did
I did when I came back
and attacked it with a vengeance.
I laid it out with their A’s and
with all the self-worth I could conjure for the second time.
to add with honors
And this time I cared. So I sent a picture and went back to work.
I may not have slam-dunked the algebra, but I climbed your ladder to display the thing.
I never got into debt.
And didn’t spend more than I made.
And I never depended on a man for my sustenance.
When I said I hauled all the water we used
for the babies
and at that time when he left
and I had to do it all myself,
I was long and lean and strong
I did make it from sunrise to dusk
my story is true.
when Grandfather told me about laying 80 miles of barbed wire for fencing that year
his story was true.
and there was a time when the barn burned down.
that was a bad year.
He had to wait another two years to be able to buy a new overcoat.
3) It’s cliché to wonder where it all went.
How could I not remember that I ran for president of elementary school….
Yes, you did.
I don’t remember that.
I was your campaign manager.
So memory seems to stick to the bad stuff
and trauma but I’m in a different mode now so I
create miracles, co-create and all that
because this aging is not for wimps.
Maybe it was the year before Mom got sick.
Why wouldn’t I remember that?
What happened that shattered my confidence?
It never left, it just tagged along with Rip Van Winkle
believing some garbage about domestication,
that one’s worth-a woman’s worth is measured by your waistline,
by your marriage qualities,
the checkbook and
cooking skills-not by the trouble you’d fled or avoided
but they forgot that wanderers, artists, music-makers and dancers, plus
and gypsies had to pull their carts
just another mile. But I quickly
set down roots and set ’em deep
and quietly buried the afterbirths in a special location
no I freaking did not eat it-get off me-
the old way
they told me
to do this
the ones who didn’t know English , CrowDogs
from South Dakota, the grandmother said”you know that way,”
so when your children grow up-they will always have a place to go
if they get confused once in a while
or are in a dark night, kinda blue
or just need to think,
to call on Spirit,
they would know where the tree is
and they could go there and gather themselves.
I did that for my children
so they would know
they always have a home near the tree.
You just tap in and access your pin number to Creator.
4) Spiritual competition stinks worse than crap,
religious wars and power struggles
make people act worse than the lowest animals.
A man took an assault rifle to the airport this week.It was a man with a smirk, a sneer, or was that an over-educated glare of contempt?
He went to the coffee shop in the Starbucks of a major busy airport… but he claims he was just shifting the weapon
when it was aimed at a woman and her 17-year-old daughter. They were frightened-of course. Ignorance is quite frightening!
The man, a “top researcher” with a PhD in neuroscience wanted to make a statement about the right to bear arms. In the news report they claimed he didn’t treat patients at the institute.
At the airport with an assault rifle? Oh Lord.
Jesus, hold my hand.
No ethnic, as in professional black person would have the cojones to do that, and I’m sure as hell you wouldn’t find an Hispanic man in sheriff Joe’s territory trying to support weapons rights by walking up to Starbucks at Sky Harbor with a rifle. Nada.
He didn’t hear about LAX? He hadn’t heard about Sandy Hook? or even Columbine?
You want to own a gun, you leave that phallic toy at home.
And what about that other guy-the football player. Ray. Ray, you got to get together and learn to do it right. Don’t waste your life or hurt anyone else. Dr. PHIL!
What is UP with these people lately?
You want to be mad at your wife or fiancé, you take a nice walk and talk it out, fool. Or go talk to your coach or some older dudes who have SENSE as in a BRAIN with working brain cells. You do not hit a woman. No can do.
Journal prompt: Try telling a story using poetry or free writing without proper punctuation or grammar rules and spelling etc. Just get it written down on paper or put in the computer. Start in the present and share an event. If you find your mind is wandering, or your conversation diverts, don’t fight it just now…. let it go where it will…and as you begin to remember other things (association) keep writing. Use short phrases in you need to.
I am using this method to work on my memoir and may do the whole book as a series of poems. I find the poetry method much more intimate and personal when I want to evoke a mood. It is a battle of sorts if you are into poetry and prose.
Discussion: What is your experience of memory? Of course most of us will not remember everything about our lives. Some theorists claim we remember the traumatic stuff more easily or readily. How does not remembering affect you? Does it bother you when that happens? If you are in a younger age group do you notice things about your aging relatives? What are your thoughts, if any, on aging?